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EXCLUSIVE: Arsenal and Man City working on Cancelo-Tierney swap deal
Both players are available for transfer at the end of the season, with Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta a fan of Cancelo and Tierney of interest to Man City boss Pep Guardiola.
Arsenal are in the market for a new left back - to replace Tierney - and a new right back as they recognise Ben White is naturally a centre back and are frustrated by Takehiro Tomiyasu’s injury-proneness.
If signed, Arteta sees Cancelo as the starting right back - with White being the backup in that role and first backup at centre back to William Saliba. This would mean Arsenal don't have to go out and buy a centre back. It would save the Gunners money and allow them to concentrate on bringing in Declan Rice and another midfielder. Cancelo is also able to play at left back, a further bonus.
Cancelo’s relationship is poor with Guardiola, who has made it clear he wants him out of the club.
The Portuguese star moved on loan to Bayern Munich in January for six months but the German champions are unlikely to make the deal permanent.
City, meanwhile, are looking for a versatile left back who can also play at centre back - with Tierney perfectly ticking those boxes.
Indeed, Guardiola first spoke to Arteta about Tierney during the World Cup.
Arsenal rejected City’s move at the time because Tierney was their only recognised cover at left-back, while selling to a title rival was always likely to prove problematic in the middle of the season.
City remain interested, while Tierney would consider a move as Arsenal are unable to give him the assurances he desires on playing time.
One of the big potential stumbling blocks in a swap deal being made is Man City’s asking price for Cancelo.
City value Cancelo at £60 million and it remains to be seen whether Arsenal share that opinion when the calculations are made for the overall valuations of both players.
But these are two transfers to watch in the coming weeks, with a swap deal very much an option on the table.
Elsewhere, FootballTransfers understands that Arsenal negotiations for Declan Rice are getting closer to completion - with the West Ham midfielder looking more and more likely to move to the Emirates ahead of next season.